Wasipe conflict: Buipe Paramount chief brokers peace between feuding factions
The Paramount Chief of Buipe and Vice President of the Gonja Traditional Council, Buipewura Abdulai Mahama Jinapor II, has visited the troubled Wasipe Traditional Area in the North Gonja District of the Northern Region to resolve the bloody chieftaincy dispute between the Tampulmas and the Gonjas.
The Buipewura brokered peace between the two feuding parties (Gonjas and Tampulmas) in a dialogue meeting held at Daboya.
The Chief of Lingbinsi and leader of the Tampulmas, Tika Sulemana Jahanfo and his counterpart Jatowura Peter Awusi Yakubu (leader of the Gonjas) agreed to give peace a chance.
The unfortunate incidence, which occurred on 14th January 2018, resulted in the death of a 45-year-old man and a 90-year-old woman and burning of several houses and other properties in some communities in the Tampulma areas.
Police in the area are said to have narrated that there were confrontations between the Gonjas and the Tampulmas on Saturday 13th January following the alleged refusal by the Tampulmas to allow a group of Fulani herdsmen living in the area to pay royalties to the Paramount Chief of Wasipe Traditional Area in a form of cattle.
It is believed that the Tampulmas launched a violent attack on the emissaries sent by the Wasipewura to collect the royalties, which received a reprisal attack from some Gonjas from Daboya and Damongo.
However, the Paramount Chief of the Buipe Traditional Area, Mahama Jinapor II who retired as a peace officer from the Ghana Police Service engaged the aggrieved parties in a dialogue meeting where they were all allowed to present their case.
At the end of the meeting, the leaders of the two factions pledged their commitment to live in peace, unity and in harmony as one people. They also pledged to prevail upon their subjects to also live peacefully for the development of the area.
Addressing the media, Buipewura Jinapor II expressed his disapproval for the unfortunate violent conflict, which he indicated was rare in the Gonja area.
He emphasized that, in the 21st century, violence should not be a solution to any dispute. According to the Chief, the Gonja Kingdom needs peace to develop and thus urged the groups to always seek redress in the court of competent jurisdiction, rather than taking the law into their own hands.
Buipewura Jinapor II pleaded with the security agencies to deal ruthlessly with those who would foment troubles or disturb the peace in the area. He said the north is deprived and therefore called on the youth to channel their energies to fight poverty, and also shy away from unscrupulous persons who would try to influence them negatively.
He called for a bi-partisan approach in dealing with violent conflicts and also called on the security agencies to be bold, firm and resolute in dealing with disputes and other criminal cases.
The Gonjas and Tampulmas in the North Gonja District of the Northern Region were not adversaries in any way and used to enjoy a very cordial and a flawless relationship and peaceful coexistence for over four decades now. Their relationship was superb and yielded several mutual benefits for the Gonjas and the Tampulmas. They used to live together, intermarry, work together and attend weddings, naming ceremonies and funerals together, until recently when one late Musah from a village known as Salugu staged a “solo” move to parade himself as the paramount chief of the Tampulmas in the Gonja traditional area with the title “Kadichara” of Tampulmas.
Meanwhile, the man who originally carried the Kadichara of the Tampulmas title was just a leading warrior of the Tampulma people and was never a chief. The Wasipewura is the Paramount Chief of the Wasipe Traditional Area which includes the Tampulma settler communities. The Tampulmas are settlers living in Wasipe and have no official lands. It is the Wasipewura who has the legitimate right to enskin chiefs to head all the communities under the Wasipe paramountcy and same is done by the Wasipewura in the Tampulmas areas.
But after the death of the embattled Musah, his son, Mahamadu Musah renewed the illegitimate position of his father and pronounced himself as the Paramount Chief of the Tampulmas.
This has since degenerated into the serious tension between the Gonjas and the Tampulmas in the Waspie area.
He has succeeded in recruiting most of the youth in Dissah, Nabengu and Mankarigu to advance his cause, in spite of the fierce resistance from the Northern Regional Security Council and the Gonja Traditional Council.